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How a Mom With Four Kids Uses Amazon Echo

The Unexpected Way This Family Makes Time for Each Other, Even on Their Busiest Days

We’ve teamed up with Amazon Echo to reveal how real moms use technology for everything from packing lunches to helping with homework.

With four kids ranging in age from 12 to 23, Holly Photenhauer’s day-to-day life can be a bit hectic. Her children all have different interests, activities, groups of friends — “it’s nonstop,” she says. No matter how crazy her family life gets, Holly has a few tricks up her sleeve to get her kids to school on time, make sure all the homework gets done, and keep a smile on her face.

Her biggest tip? Putting her Echo Show to work as a timer, speaker, and personal assistant. We caught up with Holly to find out how she manages to do it all with her signature sunny disposition.

Holly uses her Echo Show in the kitchen almost every night when she makes dinner. Every night, while Holly makes dinner, her kids will gather in the kitchen to help her out or do their homework together. Holly will often ask Alexa to play music while she's cooking, but it’s not just for fun — she says that it has also helped squash some of the bickering between siblings.

“One of the biggest problems with kids is the arguing,” Holly says. “They argue about who is cleaning or who did more, but when they’re listening to music, that helps. They dance and get silly, and that lightens the mood.”

When they’re not having a game night or cooking dinner together, the Photenhauer family is often on the go. "When somebody has a game, everyone tries to go," Holly explains. "When somebody’s in a play or has a dance or music recital, we try to go. You have to support your sisters and brothers.”

The Echo Show makes tackling busy schedules a cinch. Whether it’s checking the weather, asking Alexa to remind you when it’s time to leave the house, or compiling a shopping list, the Echo Show can help you keep track of all the little things you need to do that might otherwise be forgotten. That’s something everyone can take advantage of — whether you have kids or not.

Credits: Photography: Hannah Heinrich; Art Direction and Prop Styling: Emily Baker; Hair and Makeup: Lavonne Anthony; Wardrobe Styling: Johanna Cranitch; Production: Sasha Bar-Tur, Bryan Carroll, and Cassie Doyle

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